From 30th November, 2015, one Albanian and one Brit will be taking on the Eastern world. But in all the places in all the world, we hear you ask, how could these two adventurers possibly have met? Well, let us tell you a story…
’twas a stormy night, and refuge was taken in the King Edward VIII pub in Stratford, London, England. A group of friends sat at the back of the arena/pub to face the weekly quiz – was tonight the night they were to run away with the trophy? Sure, £15 prize money in a team of 13 people may not have gone far, but it wasn’t about the money, it was about spending time with friends, and in two quiz masters’ case, they were to find a spark like no other… You would think that those 13 great minds collaborating as one would destroy any of the opposing teams of 1,2 or 3. But no. They were bottom.
Michael flicked his pen between his teeth as he pretended to the group that an answer was coming to him. His excellent acting made the team mates around him think that he was really clever, even though he hadn’t written anything down for 17 minutes. And then he saw her, and the answers he didn’t have didn’t matter anymore.
Across the table was a girl whose flowing black hair waved at a very nervous Michael. Her hair was fluttering so much, he searched for a fan around her, but there wasn’t one – it must have been the natural breeze she brought with her, Michael guessed, confused. They shook hands. He said his name was Michael, because that was his name. She responded by saying her name was Ednora, because that was her name too.
After establishing names, they barely spoke to each other for about 3 months, mainly because Michael was a wimp, and Ednora had men swooning her. Ednora and Michael crossed paths here and there, would doff their caps and share a joke, Michael longing to ask the lady to accompany him on one of the things people do when they fancy each other; a date.
After many failed half-hearted attempts at asking, finally, Michael spread his peacock tail and plucked up the courage to ask Ednora on a date. It could have been a starry night had it not been for the severe pollution in the nation’s capital, blocking any hope of dreamy romanticism. Either way, on this potentially starry night in Stratford at a house party whilst donning a skeleton ghost face (it was Halloween), Ednora reluctantly agreed to waste an evening with Michael at a comedy night. Michael had chosen to take her because:
A) if the date was shit, at least they laughed at comedy
B) There was beer
C) It was free
How they had laughed, and how they would continue to laugh as they left the comedy club, skipping through the cobbled streets of Covent Garden with enough alcohol in the system to be made capable of being seduced. After walking and chatting some more about everything and nothing, it was then that they decided to head home.
Not long after, they found a corner and Michael, with his then rather bushy beard, leaned in closer to Ednora, in a sexual, non-creepy way. She smiled and met his lips, and they kissed passionately. Their first kiss, a truly magical experience. The old lady on the central line, with so much make up it worked as poly-filler on her wrinkled face, stared at them in disgust. They were both distracted by the announcement that they were now at Bank and that there was the opportunity to make a number of line changes – a truly excellent station. Was a first kiss on the Central line a bad thing? Was it tacky? Cliche? They didn’t know, but what they did know was that two and a half years later, they were heading to South East Asia for the trip of a lifetime, and they want you to join them on their journey.